Iron Rod 009 – Sidney Rigdon
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The history of the modern LDS Church portrays Sidney Rigdon in a generally unflattering light. His decision to not acquiesce to Brigham Young after the death of Joseph and Hyrum, and his resulting excommunication are often the primary “evidence” used to write Sidney off. But there are over twenty sections of the Doctrine and Covenants in which the Lord speaks about Sidney by name, and what the Lord says is quite interesting. In this episode, we scratch the surface on who Sidney was, both before and after finding the Book of Mormon, and why the Lord considered him equal with Joseph Smith.

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13 comments on “Iron Rod 009 – Sidney Rigdon

  1. One Who Is Thirsting Feb 5, 2019

    Love in the series. Will there be a set day or time when we can anticipate the release of each new episode?

    • We currently record on Sunday evening and try to publish on Monday evening once it has been edited and all of us have listened to it. But occasionally life will get in the way as it did this week.

  2. Every week I fight off the urge to respond to your podcast for the fear of the appearance of being critical or pesky, also your feeling obligated to read the comments of a heretic.
    I agree with you guys wholeheartedly about Sydney and I believe he is likened unto John in the D&C and as noted by Christ, none being greater born of women…,for his foundational work and then his future work.

    As was intimated in the podcast there is much more about Sydney, as you only scratched the surface.
    First I want to mention, close to the beginning section XI, 1835 D&C, AKA Section 35.
    Wherefore, I have called upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thresh the nations by the power of my spirit:

    I admit the whole portion is talking about a war… But the way I receive it is thresh not thrash. Replace it with separated or separate, to divide…Separation the purpose… beating what’s required to give the outcome.
    Goes right back to the preface to many of the revelations given to the first servants you spoke of.
    Five times in the D&C
    12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
    Hebrews 4:12 explains the meaning even more than my favorite D&C 33 to Ezra and Northrup.
    The offering of the word by the servants or rejection,Thresh or separate spirit from the body…

    It also goes to the revelation for Sydney to write a description of the land of Zion.
    You mentioned it but didn’t mention of why it was rejected by the lord.
    Sydney was sophisticated, recognized by people for his oration prowess and it appears he struggled with God’s way and justifying his upbringing and indoctrination ie. the way of society.
    His first writing was as of society, not God’s way. Section 24 and section 26 prove my point, reminding Joseph that he was not to become a priest crafter explained succinctly by King Benjamin.
    I could go on and on about my thoughts on the peoples cursing, the rejection of more of God’s word, his servants(the weak things of the world)and the foundational work and in contrast to the historical result with the acceptance of satan‘s industrial revolutions curse brought upon the people bolstered by the modern church’s prophets acceptance and teachings for it.

    On a different note, one reason I question the Imminent return of the servants that we are hoping for is, that many apostles, prophets and also Sydney were anticipating,and now including us ,is the scriptures indicating the Lords work will be shortened in righteousness, lengthened in wickedness and the cursing invoked until not a man left… In the meantime I keep watching and searching, oh I forgot measuring doctrine … LOL

    For next week I thought I would give one of my favorite Brigham Young hijacking the work,changing Deity and promoting a great stumbling block,the abomination of polygamy scriptures.
    4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

    In my opinion proof that the Lord will introduce and have preordained deceivers promote deceptions to people praying or desiring for that which they ought not. Many warnings in the D&C about lustful desires of individuals and the group as a whole.
    It’s interesting that in the history of the church Joseph quotes the prior verse three of Jude Identifying that he knew that he would be one to turn the people to the buffetings of Satan and introduce their deception, the introduction of polygamy, a stumbling block, fulfilling ancient prophecy.
    3 Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.
    It will be fun to see what you present next week!

    • Ranae Feb 11, 2019

      In reference to your comment about:
      “I have called upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thresh the nations by the power of my spirit”
      Have you considered that this may be happening right in front of our eyes (Brexit, “deplorables” who voted for Trump, populist wins in Italy, Hungary, Brazil, the “yellow jacket” protests spreading through Europe, etc.)?
      You mentioned the context of war for these verses. It would make sense then to look to the political realm for some of what is prophesied. There is a war going on currently to determine the fate of nations. And interestingly enough, I have seen many atheists who have stated that seeing what is unfolding throughout our country and around the world is giving them faith and hope that God is leading the way. Otherwise, there would be no hope for victory.

      • You could make an argument through the Scriptures that the Lord even used the king of Egypt and referred to him, depending on the translators as His servant…
        In my humble opinion I believe that this separation is referring to covenant servant’s that have received his word/spirit and have His power in the third watch…
        My favorite early revelations relate how this power is to come about… In the modern D&C Section 6 to Oliver, section 11 to Hyrum and again section 18 to Oliver…
        I want to emphasize to read section 11 very carefully in its order and context. Section 11 can show where thrusting in your sickle is an individual line upon line pursuit to receive the word and then the assignment of power…

        The modern corporate uses this as a missionary scripture…Which can be argued according to section 118’s mandate to take the word so individuals can come to the reception spirit and power themselves.

        For Oliver, Hyrum, Ziba, Peter Whitmer Junior and many other missionaries after these first missionaries, these thrust in your sickle scriptures are for them to receive the word.
        The context of the wording proves my point verse 26 and 27 of section 11.

        26 Therefore, treasure up in your heart until the time which is in my wisdom that you shall go forth.
        27 Behold, I speak unto all who have good desires, and have thrust in their sickle to reap.
        Notice that the time to go forth is after they have individually thrust in their sickle and reaped!
        It is not until much later that the thrusting in your sickle is refered to specifically as a missionary work.

        21 Seek not to declare my word, but first seek to obtain my word, and then shall your tongue be loosed; then, if you desire, you shall have my Spirit and my word, yea, the power of God unto the convincing of men.
        22 But now hold your peace; study my word which hath gone forth among the children of men, and also study my word which shall come forth among the children of men, or that which is now translating, yea, until you have obtained all which I shall grant unto the children of men in this generation, and then shall all things be added thereto.
        23 Behold thou art Hyrum, my son; seek the kingdom of God, and all things shall be added according to that which is just.
        24 Build upon my rock, which is my gospel;
        25 Deny not the spirit of revelation, nor the spirit of prophecy, for wo unto him that denieth these things;
        26 Therefore, treasure up in your heart until the time which is in my wisdom that you shall go forth.
        27 Behold, I speak unto all who have good desires, and have thrust in their sickle to reap.

        Again it is easily shown that the reaping is an individual line upon line pursuit… And then they shall go forth in power.

        I believe that we now are in a time that those according to modern D&C section 18 to Oliver, those that rely upon the word, search hard enough to have the reception granted… cannot be led astray according to the word of God. The separation that was talked about earlier in my comment is happening now…
        Measuring Doctrine, Searching and Watching are the ways we can guarantee the Lords promises.
        Do you think it is just coincidence that these individuals that name their handles and put together the Ironrod podcast, might understand this separation that is taking place… they assuredly understand section 88 verse 81 and many others…

        Once we have been warned we are to warn our neighbor…

        Coming to Christ and salvation is an individual line upon line process through the word of God…
        As much as we would like and desire to give our families and friends line upon line, it is impossible.
        I like the example in the beginning of the book of Mormon where Christ gives Lehi a book and bade him read… then he receive the spirit… Seems as though Christ himself can’t overcome the line upon line.
        This world is so corrupted, we have through society and public education and also our corrupt churches have accepted iniquity and separate ourselves from our God in such a way that I am very skeptical that the separation doesn’t come by the power of God as prophesied in Scripture.

        • Watcher Feb 12, 2019

          “In the modern D&C Section 6 to Oliver, section 11 to Hyrum and again section 18 to Oliver… I want to emphasize to read section 11 very carefully in its order and context. Section 11 can show where thrusting in your sickle is an individual line upon line pursuit to receive the word and then the assignment of power… ”

          Brilliant!

          To your point, the opening verses of section 6 inform us that there is POWER in the word. The passage begins and ends with the command to give heed to His WORD:

          “Behold, I am God; GIVE HEED UNTO MY WORD, which is quick and powerful, sharper than a two edged sword, to the dividing asunder of both joints and marrow; THEREFORE GIVE HEED UNTO MY WORDS”

          There is power in the word!!

          The final missionary work cannot take place in power until God’s servants access the power hidden within God’s word. We need to thrust in the sickle and reap.

          “those that rely upon the word, search hard enough to have the reception granted… cannot be led astray according to the word of God”

          Again, to your point, we are informed that “..whoso treasureth up my word, shall not be deceived” (JST Matt 23-24)

          Also, a keyword search of “divide asunder” brings up numerous passages linked to the importance of the word of God including the following passage that confirms that those the “lay hold upon the word of God” will make it past the snares of the devil and enter into to the strait and narrow course:

          Helaman 3:29
          29 Yea, we see that whosoever will may lay hold upon the word of God, which is quick and powerful, which shall divide asunder all the cunning and the snares and the wiles of the devil, and lead the man of Christ in a strait and narrow course across that everlasting gulf of misery which is prepared to engulf the wicked—

      • When I see the images from France, I can’t help but think of D&C 87:4

        And it shall come to pass, after many days, slaves shall rise up against their masters, who shall be marshaled and disciplined for war.

        That didn’t happen in the 1860s. This is still a future prophecy. Current economic policies are eroding the middle class, leading us back towards a two-tiered society of ruling masters and debt slaves. Governments today use military weapons and tactics to suppress protesters. Something is brewing. I fear we have a lot further to descend before we reach the breaking point.

  3. One Who Is Thirsting Feb 10, 2019

    Any idea why in D&C 58:57 the Lord instructs SR to dedicate and consecrate the land of Zion and the temple lot, but JS was the one who ended up dedicating the temple spot?

    57 And let my servant Sidney Rigdon consecrate and dedicate this land, and the spot for the temple, unto the Lord.

    • If you read John Whitmer’s History, Chapter 9, (http://www.centerplace.org/history/misc/jwhitmer.htm) Sidney did dedicate it:
      “On the 2nd day of August 1831, Brother Sidney Rigdon stood up and asked saying: Do you receive this land for the land of your inheritance with thankful hearts from the Lord? answer from all, we do. Do you pledge yourselves to keep the laws of God on this land, which you never have kept in your own lands? we do. Do you pledge yourselves to see that others of your brethren who shall come hither do keep the laws of God? we do. After prayer he arose and said, I now pronounce this land consecrated and dedicated to the Lord for a possession and inheritance for the Saints (in the name of Jesus Christ having authority from him.) And for all the faithful servants of the Lord to the remotest ages of time. Amen.

      “The day following, eight elders, viz., Joseph Smith, Jr., Oliver Cowdery, Sidney Rigdon, Peter Whitmer, Jr., Frederick G. Williams, Wm. W. Phelps, Martin Harris, and Joseph Coe, assembled together where the Temple is to be erected. Sidney Rigdon dedicated the ground where the city is to stand: and Joseph Smith, Jr., laid a stone at the northeast corner of the contemplated temple in the name of the Lord Jesus of Nazareth. After all present had rendered thanks to the great ruler of the universe, Sidney Rigdon pronounced this spot of ground wholly dedicated unto the Lord forever: Amen.”

  4. One Who Is Thirsting Feb 15, 2019

    I’ve been pondering SR and his greatness. He basically believes the scriptures at face value and tried to live his life accordingly.

    He lived as close to the scriptures as he knew how before becoming baptized. Is this a pattern for us to follow today? He was willing to separate himself out from friends and acquaintances to live more fully the truth. Is that an example or pattern to follow before the return of the Lord’s servants to the vineyard?

    Just some early morning ponderings.

    • Watcher Feb 15, 2019

      “Is this a pattern for us to follow today? He was willing to separate himself out from friends and acquaintances to live more fully the truth.”

      What a great observation/question

      Two of the many things that I think about that seem to separate Rigdon from many of the saints is-

      1- How he felt a need to tearfully apologize to anyone he had ever offended as soon as he accepted the fulness. How many people do that when they are “converted”? In todays frame of reference I doubt he had much to apologize for but his passionate desire to do so is remarkable and it shows that he truly experienced the manifestation of God’s spirit.

      2- His teaching in Lectures that a man must be willing to sacrifice ALL THINGS including reputation, wealth, etc… Few if any of the restoration saints sacrificed as much as he did IMO. Indeed he was the scapegoat sacrifice that had to be humiliated in front of the world and his calling caused him to be led out of the fold and enter into exile for the remainder of his life. Even four generations later people continue to mock him and use him as an example of “religious excess”.

      The JST substantiates the fact that although we always follow God’s teachings over man’s teachings anytime a priesthood leaders falls short in his teachings, God does send righteous “guides”, such as Moses, Enoch, Melchizedek, Elijah and other great prophets.

      If I were to pick someone from the restoration movement that I consider a righteous guide, it would be Rigdon.

      Obviously he had human foibles and imperfections and committed sins and even probably had some physical health issues that affected him, but he was a remarkable person who seemed pretty consistent in what he taught and how he lived what he taught, and his understanding of the gospel.

      I just don’t think that any of us who sit back and read church history in the comfort of our homes and relatively comfortable lifestyle even begin to appreciate what he and many other saints went through for the cause of Zion

      Joseph of course is in a different calling all together I am sure have no idea what it would be like to go from the revelatory sweet-spot and filled with the spirit in the early Kirtland years , to the dark, paranoid days of Nauvoo where God was withdrawing his spirit because of the sins of latter day Israel that had been placed upon him and covered his eyes.